Transregional Center for Democratic Studies

The Weaponization of Memory in Times of Political Rupture(s)

The Annual Conference of the Memory Studies Group at The New School for Social Research (NSSR) with Keynote Lecture by Robin Wagner-Pacifici, University Professor, NSSR: Weaponization through Domestication: Events and Non-events in our Short Term Memory

Saturday, May 13, 2023, 10:00AM to 6:00PM
Wolff Conference Room
6 East 16th Street, New York, NY

Recognizing the global shift to populist politics, the re-emergence of authoritarian regimes, and the ongoing war conducted by Russia against Ukraine, we are proposing a theme that spotlights the striking instrumentalization of memory and unmasks the logic of power relations. Examples of “using and abusing the past” are visible in many cases: the unprecedented proliferation and cultivation of biopolitics during the COVID-19 pandemic; the national populist rhetoric against migrants in Trump’s USA or Orban’s Hungary; the Russian invasion of Ukraine; the full out war between Armenia and Azerbaijan in the Caucasus; the attack on democracy and the rise of illiberal regimes elsewhere from Bolsonaro’s Brazil to Modi’s India. All these and other profoundly unsettling political and social events illuminate “the power of memory” and “the power over memory” (Müller 2002) in our time of political and social upheavals and cataclysms.

For the full program and to register please access the conference page here. (The conference is FREE and open to the public – with RSVP.)

Presented by The Memory Studies Group at The New School for Social Research and the Transregional Center for Democratic Studies

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